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article imageBugs Bunny spoof draws slap from broadcast standards council

By John Duarte     Mar 4, 2012 in Entertainment
Ottawa - The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC) says Global Television, while not in breach of code of ethics, didn’t go far enough when it aired a spoof involving the death of Bugs Bunny.
The nation’s broadcast regulator says the scene, part of a “Family Guy” episode aired on Global on Jan. 23, 2011, failed to warn viewers about the graphic spoof in which Bugs Bunny is brutally killed. The ruling stated that scene in itself did not specifically violate broadcast standards, but the network should have posted a warning about the violent content.
The cartoon segment, featured in the “Stewie B. Goode” episode, depicted a spoof in which Bugs Bunny is shot at close range by Elmer Fudd. In the prolonged scene, Bugs clutched his bleeding chest and died. That was followed by Fudd twisting the rabbit’s neck and dragging the carcass by the ears through a pool of blood.
The CBSC ruling, handed down on March 1, stated that Global provided viewers with warnings about the sexual and language content on the show, which aired at 5 p.m., but failed to post sufficient violence warnings. The ruling states the broadcaster must air an apology telling viewers it violated the Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB) code of ethics for depicting violence. The apology must air during prime time and be repeated once in the time slot the offending episode originally aired.
The CBSC investigated the matter after a viewer complaint about the "extremely adult language" in the episode, saying much of the content was not suitable for children and should be restricted to airing after 9 p.m.
The CBSC said its National Conventional Television Panel, which examined the complaint, concluded the content of the spoof, although graphic in nature, was not the offending factor that led to the ruling. The bothersome part was that Global failed to provide a proper warning.
“The panel finds that the scene was definitely somewhat gruesome and uncomfortable to watch,” the judgement says. “It recognizes, however, that the scene was intended to satirize the violence found in that type of cartoon program. The gag was somewhat tongue-in-cheek since Family Guy itself is an animated program that sometimes contains violence.”
Global says that the series “tends to push the envelope” and feels that it had provided proper viewer advisories and rated the episode 14+.
More about Family guy, Bugs bunny, Canadian Broadcast Standards Council, Television
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